Line 8b on the 1040 is for Tax Exempt Interest. Anyone can receive tax exempt interest if they invest in municipal bonds.
There is/was an ad on Newsmax.com that inferred that anyone could just get this money from the IRS. As with most things on Newsmax, the ad is very misleading. The ad showed a hypothetically amount of over $50,000 on line 8b. The only way to get this much tax exempt interest is to own $2-$3 million in municipal bonds. If you have an extra $2-$3 million laying around, buy some municipal bonds and you will get $50k+ a year in tax exempt interest.
If you read the fine print on the ad, they were trying to sell a subscription to a municipal bond newsletter.
8B refers to the line on Form 1040 for reporting tax-exempt interest, such as from municipal bonds. Every state, city, county, town, village, etc. sells bonds at one time or another. The interest is tax-free at the Federal level.
Nothing new, they've been around for decades. Rates of return are pretty lousy, mostly because of the tax exempt nature of them. You'll generally do much better with taxable equity investments, especially if you are young and have time on your side to flatten out any peaks and valleys from boom-bust economic cycles.
Some internet ads are boosting a secert inside info and are miss leading the facts.
Simply it is an investment in Municipal Bonds. By default they have federal tax exemption status claimed on line 8b of federal 1040 tax form. In some cases (for example if you buy your in-state bonds) “munis” might have state tax exemption as well. For this reason municipal bonds are often referred as “double-exempt bonds.”